Political leaders cannot be trained, but must be found, says MM Lee

03Sep09

Lee Kuan Yew polishes his crystal ball. CNA:

Political leaders cannot be trained, but must be found and be people with passion, says Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew. …

“Many voters now tell us openly – “my family, three of us vote for you but two of us voted against you”. Just to let you know we want an opposition voice and we don’t want you to be so overwhelming. So in that case you may have a freak result and that worries me. So we have a president with blocking powers,” said Mr Lee.

Which means a new party cannot raid the reserves or change top officials, such as the police commander, without the president’s consent.

Mr Lee said: “I spent 15 years thinking out these safeguards and finally persuaded my younger colleagues that we needed this because they can’t guarantee that they’ll each time provide a better team than the opposition, just because it has been done in the past. No problem in next election, but maybe after that – if we don’t find a good team in elections after that – we are at risk.” …

But concerns about the global economy were also very much on people’s minds and questions were asked as to Mr Lee’s views on what could have led to the fallout.

Mr Lee believes the excesses of the liberal system and the belief that a completely free market will allow great benefits, were contributing factors.

“However we learn, whatever lesson we learnt, I believe that the free market system from time to time you must expect a glitch and a failure in the market. It happens regularly … you will learn the lesson from this ever after, no more crisis and I think certainly it will happen again. That’s the way of the free market economies,” he said.

Lengthy, uncut videos also linked to article.


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